In Act 4 Scene 1 How Are the Relationships Presented?

Topics: Interpersonal relationship, Family, Love Pages: 2 (547 words) Published: December 17, 2012
In Act 4 Scene 1 how are the relationships presented?

Shakespeare presents many relationships in ‘Much Ado About Nothing’ as there are family relationships, love relationships and relationships between friends. During Act $ Scene 1 we see these relationships change and be destroyed. It is a key scene for many characters as everything changes from the start of the play. As at the start of the play we see a relationship blossom between Claudio and Hero. While Claudio’s best friend Benedick and Hero’s cousin Beatrice are far from a relationships as possible, as the constantly make witty remarks towards each other.

Act 4 scene 1 marks a critical turning point in the relationship between Benedick and Beatrice. Benedick seems to make an important decision when he stays behind in the church with Beatrice and her family instead of leaving with Claudio, Don Pedro and Don John. His loyalty, which lies with his soldier friends when he arrives in Messina, now draws him to stay with Beatrice.

At the start of Act 4 Scene 1 we see that the relationship between Claudio and Hero has broken down as he has accused her of being unfaithful. By this relationship breaking down we also see that Leonato and Hero’s relationship becomes violent because of Claudio’s accusation. We see that Leonato believes Claudio and not Hero as in Shakespeare time male solidarity was key in back then it was mainly a patriarchal society, men stand together. But in Benedick’s case we see that his loyalties have shifted as he goes against his comradeship, he goes against his old beliefs that men should stick together. Instead his loyalties lie with Beatrice as we see him telling her he will challenge Claudio as he has upset her.

We can Leonato and Hero’s relationship become violent, he disowns her and doesn’t try to help when Beatrice thinks she might of died “O Fate, take not away thy heavy hand. Death is the fairest cover for her shame. That may be wished for her”. We can see that there...
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